BackgroundChange is coming to public services in Lambeth. The cooperative council isLambeth’s big idea for local government. It’s about giving people moreinvolvement and control of the services they use and the places where they liveby putting council resources in their hands.Over the years, we have seen how cooperation between service providers, suchas the council, and those who use or are affected by services, such as residentsand communities, has resulted in public services that are more closely alignedwith people’s needs and expectations. In Lambeth, there are dozens ofexamples of this approach in action, and this was the inspiration for thecooperative council.In addition, the aftermath of recession and the deepest cuts in Governmentfunding for a generation, demanded a reform of public services – they simplycould not continue to be delivered in the same ways.The cooperative council shows that this ethos - of meaningful partnership andcooperation - is the foundation on which public services can be run in years tocome.The cooperative council aims to: • Turn more citizens from passive recipients into active shapers of services • Deliver more effective, m ore responsive services by giving users more control • Strengthen civil society so it’s better able to deal with challenges • Do things ‘with’ our communities rather than ‘to’ our communitiesThis is an opportunity to think creatively and realistically about local publicservices, with the prospect of improved, more responsive service delivery as theresult.The overall Good for Nothing challengeLambeth has 64 parks and green spaces. Lots of them are in great shape andare being used by local people in innovative, positive ways. Many however, areless well cared for and as budgets are reduced they need even more volunteersupport to sustain and improve them.Our challenge is to find ways to engage more people from more diversebackgrounds in helping make the borough’s parks better, more positive placesto be. How can we help people to make all of Lambeth’s green spaces feel likethey really belong to them and their local communities?
The briefWe have identified the Lambeth parks with the most positive stuff happeningaround them and we have the ‘keys’ to some of the most problematic spacesacross the borough. We have 2 days to identify innovative ways to recruit newand different groups of people into greater engagement with their local parks: - by identifying and distilling best practice from across the borough and beyond – who are the park pioneers and how can we capture and share their learning in engaging ways? - finding ways to communicate the opportunities around greater park ‘ownership’ to more diverse and less typical park audiences - initiating and seeding fresh activities in some of the more ‘unloved’ parks to help new audiences ‘learn by doing’ - identifying ways to get more social entrepreneurship happening in and around Lambeth parksPotential outputs1. Prototypes for engaging ways to join the dots between existing green space initiatives with the potential to engage more diverse audiences2. Ideas for repackaging and adding angles to existing initiatives to help them to communicate more effectively to diverse audiences3. Prototypes of innovative initiatives to engage different audiences in park improvement4. Prototypes for new structures that sit between the council and residents where troubled parks are turned into opportunities.5. Communication ideas to encourage groups that don’t traditionally use parks feel stronger ownership over them6. Ideas for events and initiatives that bring more diverse communities together in parks